Just some early morning thoughts from me to you…
“One day some parents brought their children to Jesus so he could lay his hands on them and pray for them. But the disciples scolded the parents for bothering him. But Jesus said, “Let the children come to me. Don’t stop them! For the Kingdom of Heaven belongs to those who are like these children.” And he placed his hands on their heads and blessed them before he left.
Matthew 19: 13-15 (NLT)
My memory is clear all these years later. I wouldn’t have missed it for the world. I had to change some plans-but as with anything involving our granddaughters, our plans always get changed to be with them.
The school which our granddaughters had attended was presenting a night of music and art put on by the students to benefit the continuing good work of the school’s fine arts department. Both of our girls, with the other students, sang a welcome song to those who had gathered, and then sang or performed their own pieces with the students from their respective grade levels.
Hannah participated with her class in a powerful instrumental rendition of “Jesu, Joy of Man’s Desiring,” and Ellie’s class performed a number of pieces including “Books of the New Testament” which Ellie sang passionately and with her entire being. Of course we were captivated by both of them, and even noticed their classmates, every now and then, who seemed to be singing with them.
At the conclusion, I went to each of our precious girls, individually, and told them it was wonderful, they were wonderful, and Mimi and I couldn’t take our eyes off them as they were on stage singing, playing instruments and performing.
And then to our six-year-old Ellie, I asked this:
“Ellie, tell me, was there anybody else up there singing besides you?”
She looked puzzled at first, and then smiled warmly and hugged me when I told her that “she was the only one I could see.”
I asked the same question of our eleven-year-old Hannah at the end of her concert:
“Hannah, was there anyone else up there playing the instruments with you?”
Again, a slightly puzzled look for just a moment, and then a wide smile broke across her face. She knew what I meant-that she was the only one I could see-and responded with a hug and “I love you, Gran!”
Children in the world today have enough people and places offering them a frown and criticism, rejection and withdrawal of love, intimidation and pressure to perform before they receive love and affirmation. Thank goodness that’s not the case with Hannah and Ellie.
But I still see as one of my roles as their granddaddy to always be a place of love, warmth, absolute unqualified affirmation, smiles and laughter, hugs and kisses, and in addition to their Mimi and parents, whom they adore, to be a “safe place” for them to come to for any reason, no matter what. And, although I get into some trouble for this at times, I’m also their “go-to guy” when they need a “yes” for something they would like to have or do.
The reasons for all of that are very simple-I love them. Their Mimi loves them. And that’s also Christ’s example to me, to us. That’s what Jesus did and that’s what Jesus still does. And He calls me and you to do the same.
That’s how Jesus views not only my granddaughters, but all of His children everywhere around the world. Actually He would even enlarge my focus just a bit to include His “children of all ages” everywhere around the world. So that they too, at any age, feel as we try to make our granddaughters feel-special, precious, unique, loved, incredible, beautiful, wonderful, protected and secure.
By the way, how do you feel? Has it been a while since you’ve felt the touch of Christ on your life? When was the last time that you realized that Christ was looking at only you? And loves you? He is, and He does.
How about that child near you? Has it been a while since child or grandchild you know has felt the touch of Christ on their life perhaps through your presence, your smile, a gentle touch or affirming word?
Do you suppose that they believe that there is someone they can go to who will always be a “safe place” for them? Maybe you?
“And He placed His hands on their heads and blessed them before He left.”
Always does. And He calls us to do the same.
In His Name–Scott